Thursday, October 20, 2016

Do you need a pep talk?

Honestly, after last week, I sure did. I got mine by signing a new client, then three days later having lunch with a treasured colleague and the prospect she sent my way. It reminded me how collegial publishing can be, and how much of my career (like ALL of it) I owe to the kindness of people ahead of me in years of experience.

So, in case you need a boost:

 I am writing to tell you the denouement of my quest to publish my first novel.

To briefly recap:  I wrote to you when I was going to a conference to get my query/first pages critiqued.  I took the advice of you and the candid Reiders and sat there with my mouth shut and took notes.  I revised based on suggestions and queried my heart out on this, my third novel.  The rejections I received for that book, added to the ones for my first two, totaled somewhere around 200.  (Give or take another hundred or so but who's counting.)


But.  I learned a lot, and applied it all to novel number four's query.  Novel four won an award for unpublished authors.  I revised again anyway.  I queried agents, and I signed with an amazing one.  And this past week, the announcement for my two book deal went out in Publishers Weekly so that must mean it's real!  (Book one is a YA high school political reimagining of "Dear Mr. Henshaw" currently titled "Dear Rachel Maddow").



So though I have yet to have enough nerve to post in the comments (there is some irony in that I realize), know that I religiously read this blog and follow the consider the council of the commenters.  Thank you, thank you, thank you Janet and to the community you have created.  If I have one piece of advice for my fellow authors--never stop writing.


And this:

 Hi Janet,

I've been wanting to send this email for a while, but I just never knew how because I didn't want to be presumptuous. Your post today about anxiety and your community struck a chord, however, and I thought it was probably time, as I owe a lot to you.

I wanted to let you know I have a new book coming out soon. Part of the reason I've been hesitant to say anything is because it's self-published (I like to call it indie published because I have my own company and hire out for things like cover and interior design), and self-publishing still seems to have a poor reputation, despite the amount of work and care that goes into it.

I'm proud of this book. I'm more proud of it than anything I've ever done in my life because there was a time when I was physically and mentally unable to write due to neurological issues, and I fought for every word. And I'm proud of it because it has continued to push me forward through recovery. I was telling my mom yesterday that if this was the last book I'd ever write (it's decidedly not, but if it was...), then I would be satisfied because everything I could ever want to say is wrapped up in this book.

I don't know if you remember, but about six months ago, I reached out to you because I was really struggling with whether to go the traditional publishing route or to self-publish. I'd received some full requests and complimentary words from agents, but nothing was catching--it felt like my work didn't belong anywhere, and I didn't know what to do with that. That inner voice kept telling me that even if I did land an agent and a traditional deal, I still wanted to do it my way because this book is so personal and I didn't want to wait for it to be available. My ego and ambition wanted the glory; my heart and soul wanted to be able to help people, for it to mean something on that level.

That's when I reached out to you, and you gave me perhaps one of the greatest pieces of advice I've ever received, wrapped in a lesson I'll never forget. You said that there will be people who need this book, that in the middle of the night, when they feel alone because of their illness, they'll find my book and know that someone understands. You said--and I'll never forget this--that I'd be lighting candles in a dark world.

It made me cry then, and damnit, it's making me cry now. Because that's all I've ever wanted out of life--to be able to heal people of their pain. And now, in even a small way, I'm able to do that. With this book, I feel like I've followed a personal path that has helped me heal, that will hopefully help others heal, while staying true to myself and my purpose, and I'm more proud of that than anything else. And I owe you so much for it. Because I wouldn't have gotten here without you. You helped reignite that flame in me that had grown dim, and now I feel like I have a place in the world again, when I was once doing little more than existing. This book gave me my hope back; you gave me back my belief in myself.



Your takeaway here:

Never stop writing.
Never lose faith.


70 comments:

Lisa Bodenheim said...

sniff...beautiful.

Thank you for the encouragement Janet. And thank you to the two Opies who shared their gratitude. Those two letters/emails say it all.

AJ Blythe said...

There's hope for us all yet. Thanks, Janet and the two OPs for sharing your positives, because no matter how determined we are, we all need that boost at times.

What a wonderful world you are in, Miss Janet, to be able to lift people like you do your Reiders (and I'm sure your clients).

Lucie Witt said...

It's not even 8am and I have something in my eye, making me all teary before I'm properly caffeinated.

Donnaeve said...

Well hey there, Lucie Witt. Maybe it's me, b/c I'll admit guilt to having to skim some comments these days - but seems you've been laying low. If not, ignore moi.

These were two great "letters" to post today. Very inspirational, and interesting to read. I'm pretty sure I know who both of these OP's are, and I thank them for sharing their individual paths to publication.

Yesterday I did a reading for a book club. Afterwards, a lady came up to me, thrilled about the part where I'd said my first attempt at writing resulted in nothing but a bunch of vignettes without a narrative thread. She'd approached agents about ten years ago - who gave her great feedback saying she had a fresh voice, intelligent phrasing, etc, but said just that - there was no narrative thread, her book was a series of vignettes. Her question to me was, "how did you do it, how did you take that "fatal flaw" and make it a publishable book?

I actually used some of your advice QOTKU, and I mentioned you. At least I think this came from you...I told her with memoirs, you have to make the reader care, i.e. what does this mean to them? What message are you trying to convey, and why does it matter?

She thank me profusely over and over and I said, "thank Janet Reid."

It's almost funny in a way...you're helping folks who've never even heard of you. I know others out here must talk about your advice too, and dispense it when needed. I sure do.

Linda Strader said...

Thanks, I needed to read this post today. I'll go have a good cry, and try to keep the faith.

Jennifer R. Donohue said...

I got four (short story) rejections and another this morning. I in fact very much needed (need) a pep talk!

Thank you, Janet, for all you do.

Colin Smith said...

What Donna said. I don't have any advice for anyone when it comes to writing queries, getting agents, or navigating the publishing world. All my best advice is simply a distillation of "read Janet's blog." :)

Jennifer: That leaves 9 billion short stories you still have out there..? Not that I'm envious of your prolific output or anything... ;) Seriously, though, think of those gems as now available to try elsewhere, or to include in that anthology you'll publish one day. :)

Theresa said...

A lovely post for this morning.

nightsmusic said...

Each person will touch a million lives before they die. In your case, Janet, make that a million and two. Thank you for all you do for us. You make us all remember, with your sharkly little nips, that we must never, ever give up and never lose the dream of what we can be.

Carolynnwith2Ns said...

"...and damnit, it's making me cry now."
Thanks

E.M. Goldsmith said...

Great. Now I am crying before I even finished my first cup of hot steamy stuff.

Janet, you are a bright star (or shark as the case may be) in a sea of murky and dangerous waters. I do believe a substantial number of books will find readers that might not have even been written because of you. You are forever my queen. And this community- you guys are the best.

Brigid said...

I've been in a funk all month. Could barely write while driving or before bed, my usual fruitful times for idea-spinning. This is good to read.

Donnaeve said...

Tiny clarification - the lady's book was memoir...mine is not. Y'all know that I'm sure...but I re-read my comment and it seemed to me I was classifying mine as memoir. (heaven forbid)

Adrienne Kisner said...

I apologize if this comment shows up more than once. I have hidden in the shadows of the interwebz so long, I don't seem to know how to use this function . . .

I figure I should stop being ridiculous and actually comment, partly because I realized I know Lucie from another online group (took awhile to connect those dots . . . I'm not the brightest . . .) and partly because it'd be easy to find me from my book title.

I'm OP #1 and a tremendous fan of all of you. It is such a boon and comfort to have this resource out there for the wearier of the queriers. Oh the queries I have queried. (And oh the explicit rejections I have received about how this particular book wouldn't sell.) But! Now! Book! In 2018. And yes, technically, it is a YA novel to Rachel Maddow. I was going to fictionalize her a la Mr. Henshaw, but my friend convinced me to "write what inspires me." So I did.

Thanks again to Janet and to all of you, for being a lifeline even when you didn't know you were. And I hope OP #2 comments so I can read that book!

Melanie Sue Bowles said...

Tears here. One of my favorite quotes: "The purpose of life is to live a life of purpose." You are walking through your life with a graceful heart, Ms. Janet. This community you've created is full of wisdom, but it's also chock full of kindness. I recently needed a sounding board and some clarity (working on my query letter) and reached out to a few folks from the reef. I will never forget THEIR kindness... Colin & Donna. Like ripples in a pond...

DLM said...

I can't wait till I get to write this letter to Janet.

Your Majesty, thank you for this. For the support and help you give so many of us who will never be your own clients. For caring as much as you do not only about reading, but about those of us who create the work.

And thank you to everyone here, who bring Janet's helpful blog into the realm of a real and vital community.

Then I started to write a big ole personal story and after a pause it was clear: not the time nor the place. So thank you to Janet and to all the Reiders.

Jennifer R. Donohue said...

Colin 22 still on submission. I have a few more that are "ready", but a lot of markets I'd send them to aren't open right now for whatever reason, and/or I already have a story there. I'm pinning dangerously high hopes on an Asimov's submission right now, as a for-instance. Like, I need to have hopes, obviously, or I wouldn't be playing the game. But you need to find the appropriate hope-pragmatism balance, and mine got all wonky yesterday.

But, yesterday, a Writer Friend™ and I almost ran away to kickstart a publishing house. It was one of those days. Reiders would be welcome to submit! ^^

DLM said...

Adrienne and OP2, y'all have provided inspiration for a lot of us today. We all know for every commenter on here, there are lurkers. I love it when we hear new voices; and, Adrienne, what a debut! :) Hee, and "wearier of the queriers" - I see a new shirt for the imaginary Reider Gift Shop and Inspiration Emporium.

Donna, don't you sort of feel for those who haven't heard of the QOTKU? You are good to be a witness for her wisdom!

Jennifer: HMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!! Keep us posted as you turn the Big Five into the Big Six!

I met an agent this weekend I might query. Just something about him; and what is there to lose, right?

But this should set a fire. I need to edumacate myself and get on the path if I *might* make a run at indie publication.

french sojourn said...


Wonderful post today. It's definitely something to think about as I go back to the trenches. (Literally trenching today for new plumbing for the added guest suites) Yipee!

Thanks QOTKU for the pick-me-up.

Cheers!

Claire Bobrow said...

Thank you for posting these letters, Janet, and for creating this community. It's become the place I most look forward to "visiting" every morning.

Adrienne: congratulations! I look forward to reading your books :-)
OP #2: I'm so glad you shared Janet's words of encouragement, and that you are out there "lighting candles in a dark world." Congratulations on your book!

I like the smell of optimism in the morning - it goes well with coffee AND tea.

Susan said...

Wow. I did not expect to see this today, but I'm grateful, if only for a chance to say thank you to Janet again. I cried when I wrote it then, and I'm crying now because the words are still resonating.

This past week has been hard on my family. My grandma was in the hospital, and we had to move her to an independent living place. She's happy-ish there, but it's like the past is coming up to greet us again because we had to go through something similar with my mom's mother when she had Alzheimer's, and those weren't the best circumstances. I healed from that through Book #1, but my family is finally dealing with that pain. By being there for them when life is hardest, I'm finding that you can light candles in more ways than one: through your actions, through your words, and sometimes just by being.

Book 2 helped me find my way back to myself, and I'm so grateful to Janet for guiding me there--and I'm glad I was able to tell her. I literally wrote one sentence at a time with this book. It looks like Book #3 may have a similar fate, but although it's frustrating, every sentence written is one more than you had before. Sometimes that's what it is: a sentence at a time. So, yes... Never stop writing and have faith.

Adrienne: What an amazing story and huge accomplishment! Congrats, and welcome!

Diane: I'm working on putting together an (unbiased) document to help authors figure out whether traditional or self/indie publishing is right for them. Holler when you're ready to research and I'll point you in its direction when it's ready--and feel free to ask me any questions about self-pubbing in the meantime.

Sherry Howard said...

I love that you knew we'd love those letters! What an affirmation for the community we are! This column is my touchstone any time I need a pep talk, and today hit the sweet spot! In Kentucky our trees are multi-colored and leaves swirl on the busy streets during our beautiful fall.

mickibrowning.com said...

Congratulations to both posters.

Sometimes we just need a bit of validation, that permission, if you will to follow the path that we know is right, the one that keeps niggling at us in the dark of the morning. Those candles, well, they shine so bright.

C. L. McCollum said...

Oh man I so SO needed this today. An online friend who starting their publishing journey just a little before me now has 6 books out and the most recent just hit the NYTs bestseller list, and while I'm SUPER thrilled for them, it just hit me harder in the 'wow I'm too far behind to ever get caught up aren't I?' feels.

Both letters were definitely reminders I needed. I'll get there - some path or another I will get there.

And so will all of you awesome fellow Reiders!!!

Bethany Elizabeth said...

Writing can feel like such an isolated and solitary pursuit. Posts like this make me realize how tight the community is in the business of telling stories. We all want to connect with others through our writing, and letters like these are so encouraging.

I'm grateful for this little pocket of the ocean because I don't have to be published to be welcome. It may not seem like much, but it means the world to me. Ya'll are the best.

S.D.King said...

Thanks for the post.

My takeaway is that saying 'thank you' is always appropriate and always welcomed.

Even years later it is welcomed.

ProfeJMarie (Janet Rundquist) said...

"ProfeJMarie likes this."
;)

RosannaM said...

It was indeed uplifting to read those letters. We are all on our own paths, sitting in silence staring at our blank space and trying to wrangle some ink into behaving into a readable story.

We need to hear and celebrate other writer's successes, so thank you to Susan and Adrienne and congratulations!

Wishes to all for a productive writing day.

Colin Smith said...

Adrienne: Congratulations on the book deal!! That's awesome. PLEASE keep us posted on progress--especially when you have a pub date. :)

Is anyone tracking all the Reider books published or about to be published? Seems like someone ought to do that so we don't forget...

Oh, all right! If you have a book coming out--even if the title is provisional and it's not due out for another few years--or if you have short stories published, email me with the deets (see my Blogger profile). I'll compile a list for the Treasure Chest.

To be clear, I'm looking for:

* Books by Reiders that are already out there (e.g., Theresa's book, Donna's book that's coming out next Tuesday, Susan P's book, etc.) I don't care if you indie pubbed or trad pubbed, if you only have one book so far, or if you have ten. Send me the title(s) and pub date(s) (if forthcoming), and I'll list them.

* Short Stories/Flash Fiction by Reiders that have been published. If it's freely available online, then send me a link. Otherwise, send me the story title and publication/issue/date so people can look them up.

Why do this?

* So we can be encouraged to see Reiders get published. One day that might be YOU! :)
* So we can celebrate these milestones with our friends.
* So we can support our fellow Reiders by buying their work, and/or recommending them at our local bookstores and libraries.

Thanks! :)

Amy Johnson said...

Dagnabbit--all teary here too. Janet, I can only imagine all the seeds you've planted. Just knowing there's someone who believes in ya and your writing...lest teariness advance to bawling...wrapping this up. pardon typos, can't clearly see the darn screen now. Oh for pity's sake.

DLM said...

Colin, on Donna's book ... next TUESDAY!

For so long, it has seemed the distant future. Now it's almost here.

Donna, I cannot wait to meet your creation.

Also, Colin rocks.

Amy Johnson said...

Must add: Thank you, Janet.

Colin Smith said...

Diane: I KNOW! We close on our house AND Donna's book will be in my mailbox on the SAME DAY!! And it's just a few days away!!! Exclamation points fail me.

I've thanked Janet so often here and in email, I'm sure she's sick of hearing it from me. Besides, all this appreciation can't be good for her sharkly image. I mean, people might get the impression she's actually a very nice person! ;)

JulieWeathers said...

To both of the OP, congratulations and I'm glad to see testimony of how much this blog means to people. I see Adrienne has stepped forward. A big hug to you. Good work.

Congratulations on signing the new client. *Checks email to see if it was me. Rats. No, it wasn't*

Brigid, I've been floating around in that morass with you. I had to renew my site with Bluehost for another month, yet again, to try and get the transfer thing figured out to get away from the hosting company which shall not be name. I've been fighting with them for five months now to get my site hosting straight and finally decided to either go to 1&1, which is supposed to be premier for Wordpress sites or back to Bluehost, which is more expensive, but has great customer service.

1&1 doesn't do the transfer so I've been struggling to learn all the stuff to transfer the site. I am not techie at all. When Jonathan from India starts throwing all the alphabet abbreviations at me about what I'm supposed to do my brain explodes. Take the ftp and do something to the dns, set up a public_html, but not a pubic one, then go to your sql and shake it all about until your WAMP or LAMP shows up.

Seriously people?

Thankfully, Wonder Son contacted a friend who does websites for a living. Sure, she'll host my site for a very reasonable fee and transfer it for free. Done.

And the angels sang.

One less thing to fret about.

I've been trying to write and getting some done, but nothing spectacular. I'm going to print out Rain Crow today and read it over the weekend to see where I am.

I'm also going to call the nephew of two of the cowgirls in Cowgirls Wanted this weekend to interview him if I can. I'm tracking down his info now. He's a world champion cowboy and a big promoter of his aunts, so I think he'll help.

And Janet sang.

Wonder Son's birthday is tomorrow, so I'm baking a rodeo cake and a cheesecake today.

Anyway, long story short, I know too late for that, I agree with the OPs. This blog is my go to. It's easy to get down about the process. I thought for sure I had finally hit my stride with Far Rider and yet there it lies in it's own little coffin at the bottom of the bookcase, a crumbling rose laid across the lid.

I'm not sure Rain Crow will ever see the light of day. I bought her a wedding dress, but the undertaker is making another coffin just in case.

JulieWeathers said...

Melanie "The purpose of life is to live a life of purpose."

That is so true. Joseph Snoe shares letters he gets from his students with me occasionally. I cannot tell you how much admiration and respect I have for this man. He has touched so many lives in such a positive manner and truly made a difference. He really is quite remarkable.

Susan I'm sorry you're going through that. It's so hard, but I'm glad you shared your experience through your letter. WE need that reminder every now and then and I wish you and Adrienne so very much success.

Beth said...

And now I'm crying.

Adrienne and Susan, I'm so proud of both of you. Congratulations! And big virtual hugs.

Candles in a dark world. Love that. It's true of Susan's book, and of this blog. Every supportive and helpful comment here is another flame, and look how they're lighting up the place. It's glowing.

Colin Smith said...

Speaking of Donna's (stbnytba) book (stbnytb), if you're in the Raleigh, NC area on Tuesday, November 1, stop by Quail Ridge Books for Donna's very own special event! I'm planning to be there. Shout if you'll be there too. It'd be great to meet you! :)

I hope it's okay I mention this, Donna. :)

Mark Thurber said...

Wow, this is great. Thanks, Adrienne and OP#2, for sharing. Thanks, Colin, for starting to compile the Reider book list. And of course, thanks to Janet and all of the rest of you for everything.

I've been seriously working at fiction for about two years now. For the first year, the feeling of isolation was a real challenge for me. It no longer is, and this community is the main reason.

All right, I've hit my sappiness quota for the week.

roadkills-r-us said...

First, congratulations to Opie 1 and Opie 2! (Now I feel like the Cat in the Hat. Oh, well. Not the first time, likely not the last.)

I am reading this on a brief break at my day job, and find myself tearing up at my desk. Thanks a lot! 8^)

I didn't find this blog and community until after I had made the choice to self-publish (a cool story in itself). I don't regret for a minute going down that path. OTOH, it has kept me querying my short stories as I have time! And I've learned a lot. The fact that y'all are so much fun, such good writers, and so insightful, is just more cake and icing.

A big ol' Texas sized thanks to Janet, and to all of you.

And Colin, thanks for taking on Yet Another List! You rock.

Panda in Chief said...

What wonderful letters to share today. I don't know about all of you, but a little positive affirmation was sorely needed today. Congratulations to Adrienne and Susan, (I thought that was you, Susan, but was not going to say anything until you revealed yourself.) Really, you guys just make me all warm and fuzzy. (Because, you know...pandas and all.)

For Colin's list of published Reiders, don't forget Joyce Tremel, who has two mysteries out, one brand new, and Kelly Garrett who has one coming out next spring, I think.

Susan's letter made me tear up too. Actually both of them did. Sometimes this all just seems way too hard.

E.M. Goldsmith said...

Colin You should put yourself in that treasure chest because you are a gem.

I would love a list of published Reiders. That is a great idea.

Colin Smith said...

Panda: Check and check. That's why we need a list! :)

Joyce and Kelly: Drop me an email to make sure I don't forget! :)

luciakaku said...

I had a whole thing written up, and it went poof into the ethernet....

Well, anyway, congrats to both Adrienne and Susan for your achievements, and thank you for sharing the beautiful letters.

The other really important bit I had written was how much this community helped lift me out of my own head earlier this week, and gave me some killer sources. I have a new direction for my WIP, and I'm pretty sure I've solved some problems I knew about in the first part but hadn't addressed yet.

Susan said...

Thank you, everyone.
And thank you, Colin, for the addition to the Treasure Chest! It's our very own TBR list--love it.

I love this community and am so thankful for Janet, for this space of learning, growing, and support, and for everyone here. Beth said it beautifully:

"Every supportive and helpful comment here is another flame, and look how they're lighting up the place. It's glowing."

Donnaeve said...

Well, I was 1 for 2! I thought OP1 was Sam H, and I thought OP2 was Susan.

So, dearest Colin you'd need to add Sam's book deal too with Tor. (unless I missed it above somehow - possible these days)

AND...Colin I'm thinking of buying you a sandwich board. I believe you'd wear it too. Seriously - thank you from the bottom or my pea pickin' heart! I agree with Elise you're a GEM.

And yes to what our Colin said - if anyone is nearby/ in Raleigh on November 1st, (Tues) the "official" book launch for DIXIE is at Quail Ridge, 7:00 p.m. There will be cupcakes, water, coffee and WINE.

Melanie ANYTIME.

Diane, She's almost here!

BTW - check out Amazon when y'all get a chance. The edition called Library Binding (or large print) has the cover available. It's different b/c it's a different publisher. The things I'm learning...

Maybe Ms. Janet will be kind enough one day to 'splain Large Print Edition, a.k.a. Library Binding? It's a very curious thing...I thought at first it meant, ya know, like LARGE PRINT FOR FOLKS WHO CAN'T SEE. Uh. No. So then I thought, doh! Hello! Library Binding - it's a library book. But a top notch person in the industry who's name shall not be mentioned provided an explanation, yet when I looked it up on Wiki, it basically said what I thought. Library Binding = library book, and Large Print = books for people needing larger print.

= Confused.

Anywho, back to the grind.

Lennon Faris said...

Thanks, Janet! Love both letters.

Colin I think that's a great idea. Keep us updated. Can't wait to see the list!

Peggy Rothschild said...

Beautiful. Thank you to both Opies and to Janet for sharing these messages. The power of reading something uplifting cannot be overstated.

Colin Smith said...

Donna: You are so very welcome. And I agree--I'd like to see Janet 'splain that one. She's good at 'splainin. :)

And YES--Sam's book!! Again, Sam, drop me an email to remind me lest I forget. :)

Melanie: You are truly welcome. I have six kids, so it's nice to have someone actually ask for my opinion and willingly receive it. ;)

Barbara Etlin said...

Thanks for sharing these, Janet. Very uplifting!

Thanks and congrats to Adrienne and Susan! Donna, I've ordered your book and can't wait to read it!

Colin, great idea! Thanks.

Okay, I think I've used up my daily quota of exclamation marks.

Donnaeve said...

Thank you, Barbara!

Kregger said...

Adrienne and Susan,

You girls rock.

Kregger

Colin Smith said...

Okay, I've started the list. There are a few more mentioned I need to add, but here it is so you can start compiling your TBRs:

The Published Works of Janet's Blog Readers

It's also linked in the Treasure Chest

AJ Blythe said...

Welcome, Adrienne. So glad you've coming out of lurkdom so I can congratulate you by name on your book deal. I love stories of perseverance 'cause it gives me hope one day it will be me telling the story =)

Susan, like Donna, I wondered if you were the OP. So glad to hear you've decided to go ahead and SP. Just remember, if you do touch/help someone with your book (and I've no doubt you will), you will have attained the glory your ambition and ego want. After all, isn't what we do all about the reader?

b-Nye said...

Never stop.Indeed.

Katie Loves Coffee said...

This is so, so lovely. Thank you, Opies, for sharing your stories. So happy for you both!

kdjames.com said...

*sniffle* Lovely. Thanks, Janet. Count me among those who needed some hope and positivity right now. [Every time you sign a new client I think, "Oh no, now she won't want/need any more." Now I'll just remind myself of the last three words of this post instead.] [Also, congrats to your new client!]


Adrienne, welcome! You need to keep us posted on the progress of your book. A link to pre-order would be good. :)

Susan, I knew that was you. Thank you for lighting those candles.

John Davis Frain said...

In my dreams, Reiderville is on the map. Maybe Jack Reacher has stopped here for coffee and sat in the corner of the diner with his back to the wall so he could see out to the main intersection.

So now I can visit when I'm sleeping ... and when I'm awake. I find all of my days here uplifting; today's a little more. Susan and Adrienne, congratulations to you both. May the sales curve rise.

Megan V said...

Thank you Janet.

I NEEDED this pep talk (these wonderful wonderful letters from Reiders) more than I needed air tonight.


And Colin—thank you for being a gem and adding some more marvelous information to the treasure chest.

lb667 said...

What a wonderful post!
Thank you so much for sharing these emails and your own journey. I love reading this blog.
keep writing, keep reading, keep sharing the love!

MA Hudson said...

It's so inspiring to hear from people who have made it to the other side of the query trench, and thrived to tell the tale. Thanks for this Janet. It really helps.

Adrienne and Susan - thanks for sharing and congratulations on your successes!

I read SAM HAWKE's blog about her publishing journey and especially loved this nugget of inspiration:

'Do the work, don’t be an idiot, follow instructions'.

Not sure about the idiot bit, but with a bit of effort I might be able to achieve the other two!

MA Hudson said...

Colin - You're a rock star!

Colin Smith said...

Everyone: Thanks--you're welcome! I've added everyone to the list who has emailed me so far. Please continue to keep me informed of books/stories you have coming out so I can keep the list up-to-date. :)

Janice Grinyer said...

I'm at the Surrey writers conference. Its my very first ever writing conference. Today I met BJ Muntain, who I met through JR's blog. Tomorrow she's saving a seat for me.

That's the power of this blog.

Janet, thank you for your willingness to get involved with all of us- no matter where we are at in this wonderful world of writing!

PS BJ is one of the nicest Canadians I've ever met, and she is quite informative on how to survive a writers conference!

Panda in Chief said...

Well, how totally cool is it that Janice has met BJ at Surrey?
There are days that give me hope and add a little light too the world. The internet can be a force that brings people together.

Thanks Colin for putting together the list of Reider books. I was thinking I needed to wait until my magnum opus graphic novel comes out, but then I remembered I have my independently published picture book and 'toon collections. I will email you with the info. I can see that I might need more bookshelves in my house.

Kae Ridwyn said...

Wow - words fail me. They generally do when my heart fills up and spills out my eyes. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Your Sharkliness. I, too, needed this today.
Adrienne, and Susan - thank you so so much.
Congratulations and never stop writing!
I love this place.
You all are the best.
Thanks for being you. Exactly who you are - and for sharing yourselves with us all.

Tony Clavelli said...

It's probably been a year since I've commented on this blog, but these posts are when I still read daily. I don't have my success story yet, but I've gotten such great advice on all levels here. But that advice pales in comparison to the general "go for it!" attitude that really (strangely) works. Thanks for these.

Panda in Chief said...

Colin, you are such a hero to include links to books on the published works of Reider's list! Can't wait to add to my bookshelf all of these!

JD Horn said...

Never. Give. Up.
Never.

LynnRodz said...

Beautiful. Thank you for this post, Janet. I'm trying to catch up on your posts, but I've been in the Amazon jungles without wifi and I've missed so much.

Rachel Schieffelbein said...

Thank you for sharing these. 💗